I like the Brescian violas. Primitive in a classy way, often with a deep, dark sound. So, made another form based on a Strad magazine poster. Got ribs on it, birds-eye maple, which rippled and warped so badly I took them off and threw them in the fireplace.
This year, decided to just follow the pattern in Strobel's book "Viola Making." It's smaller than I wanted, but there were details to follow. And I've learned it's better to just make the darn thing, see how it turns out, make the next one better, based on what one learns from the previous. Besides, the resulting first instrument isn't as bad, or as good, as one feared or hoped. That's life. Who the heck do you think you are, anyway? Some sort of genius? Well, you're not. Get back to work.
Strobel's pattern had fine f-holes. But I didn't want them. I wanted some del Gesu type f-holes. Guarneri del Gesu didn't make violas. I do have a workable pattern for a violin f-hole, so scaled it up to viola size. Dreams of using the computer to do this quickly didn't pan out, so I sat down with paper, pencil, eraser, straight edges, French curve, protractor. Eraser, did I mention eraser? My eraser got a good workout, but I finally came up with something that I thought looked reasonable to me, and the correct size. I think. Onward!
So, to lay it out on the viola top, and then start plunging holes in.
With the stems sawed, time to resort to the knife. This is it for the day. Nearly there. Will look at it again tomorrow with fresh eyes.